Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Smelly Cat, Oh Smelly Cat...

My friend Appleleaf asked me recently, "Are skunks as stinky as we've always heard?" I told her I couldn't think exactly how to describe it, but the short answer would be, "Yes." I jokingly mentioned that we would probably be able to give a better answer in a day or two since the skunks have been pretty active around our house lately.
As I've mentioned before, Dusty is our escape artist cat. We would like her to be an indoor cat, but she has other plans. Birds to terrorize. Shrews to slaughter. Skunks to surprise.
Wait. What?
We didn't catch her before it got dark tonight. I figured she would ask to be let in when she got hungry. So of course, our first thought when we smelled a skunk outside was, "Where's Dusty?"

Appleleaf, imagine a pile of burning rubber tires. Now imagine putting out the fire with a musky cologne. The resulting odor would give you a good general idea of the smell that came in with the cat. Merlin, our much more sensible black cat, was repulsed but curious. He followed her around the room, sniffing each spot where she stepped.

Skunks are pretty remarkable creatures. They amble along without a care in the world. They know that if anything tries to attack them, they have the best defense. It is such a good defense, they will give a predator a fair chance to back off, because even the skunk doesn't want to smell like a skunk. First they stamp their feet. Then they turn around with their tail flopped over. If that tail straightens up, you are getting gassed. Resistance is futile. They have good range and they aim for the eyes.

Dusty is in for some major deodorizing. I've already rubbed her down with vinegar, but this is a lather, rinse, repeat situation.

And so, another chapter for "You can learn a lot from watching animals." In fact, there might be two lessons here.

Give your enemy a chance to retreat.
Some cats are stinkers.


B&B said...

OMG!! ROFLOL!!!!! @_@ Ewwwww!!!

P.S. Vinegar? Kewl. I knew it worked on other stinky stuff and colorfasted colors, but didn't know it worked on skunk. I'd always heard tomato juice but absolutely no personal experience and want to keep it that way! You are so kind to save that naughty kitty. I might have been inclined to leave him outside!

ComfyDenim said...

Oh. Wow.
Yes - and such a smell can be OUTSIDE the house and you can still smell it.

I hope Dusty is de-skunked soon.
Good Luck!

appleleaf said...

I was laughing while reading this. I don't envy you one bit.

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